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Proceedings Paper

Propagation of resist heating mask error to wafer level
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Paper Abstract

As technology is approaching 45 nm and below the IC industry is experiencing a severe product yield hit due to rapidly shrinking process windows and unavoidable manufacturing process variations. Current EDA tools are unable by their nature to deliver optimized and process-centered designs that call for 'post design' localized layout optimization DFM tools. To evaluate the impact of different manufacturing process variations on final product it is important to trace and evaluate all errors through design to manufacturing flow. Photo mask is one of the critical parts of this flow, and special attention should be paid to photo mask manufacturing process and especially to mask tight CD control. Electron beam lithography (EBL) is a major technique which is used for fabrication of high-end photo masks. During the writing process, resist heating is one of the sources for mask CD variations. Electron energy is released in the mask body mainly as heat, leading to significant temperature fluctuations in local areas. The temperature fluctuations cause changes in resist sensitivity, which in turn leads to CD variations. These CD variations depend on mask writing speed, order of exposure, pattern density and its distribution. Recent measurements revealed up to 45 nm CD variation on the mask when using ZEP resist. The resist heating problem with CAR resists is significantly smaller compared to other types of resists. This is partially due to higher resist sensitivity and the lower exposure dose required. However, there is no data yet showing CD errors on the wafer induced by CAR resist heating on the mask. This effect can be amplified by high MEEF values and should be carefully evaluated at 45nm and below technology nodes where tight CD control is required. In this paper, we simulated CD variation on the mask due to resist heating; then a mask pattern with the heating error was transferred onto the wafer. So, a CD error on the wafer was evaluated subject to only one term of the mask error budget - the resist heating CD error. In simulation of exposure using a stepper, variable MEEF was considered.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 October 2006
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 6349, Photomask Technology 2006, 634950 (20 October 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.690533
Show Author Affiliations
S. V. Babin, aBeam Technologies (United States)
Linard Karklin, Sagantec NA (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6349:
Photomask Technology 2006
Patrick M. Martin; Robert J. Naber, Editor(s)

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